Brooklyn Remembered

History of Flatbush, continued

ried behind to plunder. The whole army was safely landed on the north side of the river, and never was there a retreat better conducted, or a more signal interposition of a kind providence. Had not the wind changed, not more than half of the army could possibly have crossed, and the remainder must have fallen, with all the artillery and stores, into the hands of the English. And had it not been for the fog, their movements would all have been discovered in time, greatly to have discomfited them.

But we must now return to Flatbush. Here, after the battle, were many American prisoners. Lord Cornwallis appears to have established himself for a little while at least, in the place. Among the prisoners taken previous to, and during the battle, was Cornelius Vanderveer, the father of the present John C. Vanderveer, Esq. He was the captain of the militia of the town of Flatbush. Having sent off his family to New-Jersey, he attempted to secure his furniture, while he remained in and about his premises. He had hid his arms and accoutrements in a thicket, near the house, and having observed on a certain evening how the guards and pickets of the British were placed, he went in the dead of the night, accompanied by a faithful servant called Adam, to regain them. They approached the place where they were concealed, by a circuitous route, and having possessed himself of his arms, he put them on, the more easily to carry them. He then proposed to his colored man, to take a nearer and more direct route back. But in doing so, he came unexpectedly upon a guard, which had been placed after dark, in a position of which he was not aware. The consequence was, that he was made a prisoner, and being taken with his accoutrements on, and his arms in his hands, he had not much mercy to expect. He was carried to the captain of the guard. Here he was told by several, that there was no hope for him, he must be hung, and they actually put the rope around his neck. In the morning he was taken to the church, before Lord Cornwallis, who sent him with some others, under guard to New-Utrecht, where he was confined in a barn, with a number of other prisoners. Here he was in various ways basely treated and insulted. But while there, a Captain Miller, with whom he had been on terms of intimacy, happened to pass by, and inquired of him how he came there, and after being informed of his case, he said he would try and effect his release. A few minutes after, a file of soldiers came and took him before one of General How's Aids, by the name of Cuyler, who was from Albany, who inquired and questioned him about his situation. He asked him if he would take a protection and go home on his farm. Captain Vanderveer answered that he would, provided they would not compel him to fight against his country. Cuyler replied, with an oath, that they had fighting men enough, but as he had promised him a protection, he would give him one. He presented it to him accordingly, and said he might go to the rebels again, for what he cared. Captain Vanderveer took the protection and remained on his farm, but was abused and robbed by the Hessians, who paid no respect to his protection, and took the last shirt he had from his back, Ho that he was compelled to walk about with an old great coat, which he found, to cover his nakedness, until he could get other clothes. His faithful colored man Adam, continued with him all the while.

Flatbush was now in the hands of the British, and continued within their lines until the close of the war. During the short tarry of the army in the village, they committed many depredations. They pillaged the houses and de-

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